Daily Readings Reflection for 1/09/10

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Reflection on Today’s Daily Readings by Fr. Bertrand Buby, SM

Today’s Readings

Scripture: Lectionary # 218. I John 5:14-21. Psalm 149:1-2.3-4.5-6.9. John
3:22-30.

We may think that John in his epistles is speaking in terms of an I-Thou
relationship. We know of this expression from the great book of Martin
Buber which speaks so effectively and eloquently of this personal
relationship that is possible for us as persons. John, however, does this
with our relationship with Jesus, however, he insists that we work and live
as a community of beloved disciples. There is where our energy goes as we
look out toward the same goals that are to be accomplished for the sake of
the kingdom.

Through our Baptism we have entered into the relationship with Christ and
through the Community we have learned how to live and work with others.
Personal concerns and personal relationships are not separated from belong
within the community. We learn today that even sin is to be eradicated
through interaction within a community setting. “Anyone who sees his
sister or brother sinning, if the sin is not deadly, should petition God
and then life will be given to the sinner.” John shows us this is not
“deadly” sin but the sins we normally commit. The deadly sin he is speaking
about occurs when one separates and leaves the community of the beloved
disciple.

When we have a sense of belonging there is no fear of committing the deadly
sin of schism. John recognizes like Luke in the Acts of the Apostles that
“koinonia” is friendship within a community of believers who witness with
boldness to others and to one another about the gifts and graces God has
given to the community, the Church, through Jesus Christ.

Finally, we may learn from the Gospel how to do this through the life and
disposition of John the Baptist who probably was at the origin of the
community of the beloved disciple. His total self-giving to God and then
to Jesus was expressed in this simple formula of personal and community
living: “He must increase, while I must decrease.” Amen.

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